The question of the poll is “Is Iraq becoming a quagmire for the United States?” The results, last I checked, were 93% yes, 7% no.
This is an astonishing thing. I would have been surprised at 70%, dumfounded at 80%, but 93%?
Does this make sense? Just a few days ago I’m reading about how the numbers of Americans who approve of the war in Iraq was decreasing, but this isn’t “decrease” this is plummet!
What the heck is going on here? Is CNN making it all up? Were they hacked by radical geeks? Would the Fox poll be precisely opposite? Doesn’t CNN have a contingent of the Usual Suspects amongst its viewers?
Out of nearly 8000 votes, only about 500 Tighty Righties got online to express thier undying faith? Does that make any damn sense?
Now, understand, I’m not making any pretense of non-partisanship here. I’d by tickled to death to see a poll on GeeDubya that says “93% say chuck his sorry ass out!”. But I wouldn’t believe it.
Wow, elucidator, those really are stunningly lopsided numbers. Yet, I regard those online polls as having about the same accuracy as the Redbook “Is your man cheating on you?” quizzes (“Did you score more than 4?”). While I hope that people are finally reaching for their glasses on the nightstand so that they can see clearly, I would rather see it in a more reliable format. Perhaps this is a forecast of that very outcome, but in Sam Stone fashion, I’m just going to wait to see.
The poll numbers mean nothing. I’ve seen poll links posted in comments at the Dean blog, followed by a huge increase in Dean votes at the linked poll. Jesse Jackson polls significantly higher than any other candidate in a poll over at, IIRC, vote.com. So what gives is, it’s a non-scientific poll with skewed results due to political blogs telling readers to vote.
Those type of online polls are INCREDIBLY inaccurate. They are good for entertainment purposes only. CNN really should stop doing those polls because even though they give the “unscientific disclaimer” most people don’t understand enough about polling and statistics to know just how far off one of those polls can be.
“Scientific” polls are usually accurate to within somewhere around 3 to 6 percentage points (95% of the time) provided that the population sample was sufficiently large (maybe 500 to 1000 people) and totally random.
I think some people tend to view these online polls as only slightly less accurate than real polls. (Perhaps they think that the poll is within 10 or 15 or whatever percentage points rather than 3-6%).
This is totally wrong. Because the sample is not random-- (folks CHOOSE whether they wish to participate or not-- and with a question like the one in question, it is little wonder that war supporters didn’t flock to click in their dissent!)-- there is no way to judge the accuracy of online polls. One could be within 1 percent another might be off by 50%-- there is simply no way to tell.
The results mentioned in the OP only means that 93% of the people who actively wanted to participate feel that Iraq is a “quagmire”. I doubt that 93% of the respondents even know what a quagmire is.
This poll result means less than nothing.
PS-- I wish 93% of people really did feel that way. If it were true then Dubya would have almost no chance at re-election.
Dont see the reasoning here. Why wouldn’t they? Would a poll titled “Has Bush Blundered Us into A World of Shit”? get less responses from “war supporters”? If you are suggesting that the title is provocative, seems to me it would get even more response.
…The results mentioned in the OP only means that 93% of the people who actively wanted to participate feel that Iraq is a “quagmire”…
Indeed. Precisely so.
You lost me on that turn, partner. If its just a casual slur on people of that opinion, well, ok. Otherwise I really got to wonder what you mean. The people who said Iraq=quagmire did so because they didn’t know what a “quagmire” was? Huh? Wha?
As a theory, I like the liberal conspiracy better. More optimistic.
Scientific polls generally use something called a “simple random” sample which is, in fact, random. Sometimes more targeted surveys will seek out a cross-section according to certain criteria or may attempt to isolate a specific demographic (especially market surveys), but a political or public opinion poll uses as random a sample as possible.
Online polls are self-selected and unscientfic. The results don’t really indicate anything significant about public opinion because it is not a random sample of public opinion. Bill O’Reilly constantly trumpets his own online “polls” which invariably show stunningly lopsided support for conservative/pro-Bush issues. As much as I would like to believe this CNN actually indicated a collective awakening in the American populace, I know it can’t be true. 90% of Americans don’t agree on anything, so any time you a see those kinds of numbers, you know you’re not seeing anything scientific.
Does he get those kind of numbers? Lets get some kind of focus on “stunningly lopsided”. We pretty much know what kind of viewer is attracted to Bill Oh, Really? Is Wolf Blitzer his liberal counterpart?
Like you, I think it unlikely that his poll represents a sudden and cataclysmic change in public opinion. I’m a pessimist, I don’t believe in miracles and am seldom surprised.
But that still leaves me wondering how this happened.
NO NO NO !! FOX is “Fairly Unbalanced” My point is “yellow journalism” is not only alive and well but the basis of all newsmedia. The only poll that counts happens every four years. The rest are trash.
O’Reilly routinely gets numbers in the 90’s/single digit range on questions like “should gay marriage be legal?” or “Did the president lie about WMDs?”
Of course, this O’Reilly’s own website (not the Faux News site which has its own fake “polls”). The only people that are going to log on to a Bill O’Reilly website are going to be degenerate Bill O’Reilly fans.
I agree that Wolf Blitzer (despite the audacity of his fake name) is not the same kind of political cheerleader that O’Reilly is and that his own polls should attract a less partisan audience. However, an awful lot of conservatives seem to have bought the propaganda that CNN is an American Pravda and they avoid it like the plague. I would guess that Blitzer’s poll is maybe ten to twenty percent more accurate than O’Reilly’s but I would be stunned if even 70% of Americans were really starting to turn on Shrub yet. There is a pretty well entrenched core of conservative (30-35%) who will simply never budge no matter what (and the same is true of liberals). It’s that 30 percent in the middle that changes and to get all of that 30% on either side requires some pretty extraordinary circumstances (like getting impeached over a blow job).